Sawtell?s Jack Gillingham runs into trouble in the Saints v Coffs Swans under 14 grand final.
Sawtell?s Jack Gillingham runs into trouble in the Saints v Coffs Swans under 14 grand final.

Sawtell grabs two grand finals

Under 12s ? Sawtell 6-7-43 v North Coffs 3-1-19

FOR the second year in a row Sawtell Saints played North Coffs in the under 12's grand final held at the Coffs Harbour Showground on Sunday.

The only difference was the Saints walked away with the premiership flag.

It was a heart-stopping final which was played at a true finals level.

In the first quarter the Saints found it difficult to penetrate North Coffs strong defensive skills and were able to only put a couple of points on the score board.

North Coffs constant attacking at the ball had them in front going into the second quarter.

However, the Saints turned this around and took over the lead by continually pushing the ball into their forward line creating many options for Tristan Pennant, Angus Burkitt, Jayden Burkitt and Chris Ward.

Gradually Sawtell crept up on North Coffs and hit the front at the half-time siren.

The second half of the game was just as exciting as the first with high pressure footy being played by both sides all around the ground.

Jackson Stanmore, Audrey Gillingham and Jake Hills set up a strong defensive line for the Saints with Jackson stopping many forward thrusts by North Coffs.

Ayden Baloh, Cruz Hastings and Patrick Gillingham worked hard in the centre as did Nikki Wallace and Matt Russell on the wings.

The last quarter saw the Saints increase their lead to win going away in the end.

Goal scorers for the Saints: Tristan Pennant, Chris Ward, Angus Burkitt 1 goal each and Jayden Burkitt with three goals.

For North Coffs while the loss was disappointing the team improvement over the season was a credit to coach and players. On the day best players included Caleb Gazzard, Sam Anderson, Daniel Tran and Rohan McMahon among a great team performance.

Under 14s ? Sawtell 14-9-93 v Coffs Swans 6-8-44

FROM the opening bounce the Saints dominated the first two quarters with every player playing their role to set up a commanding 49-point lead at the major change.

Over the past few years the Saints had showed glimpses of their potential.

However, the first two quarters of the grand final they showed their immense talent right across the field.

They were able to use their accurate kicking, handball and running on to direct the ball into the forward line.

Jack Gillingham, who was often up against two opponents, still managed to take marks or bring the ball to ground for the smaller forwards, where Adrian Nix, Codey Moran, Angus Burkitt, Kyle Smidt and the ever reliable Tommy Christos were able to convert into points on the board.

In the middle of the ground Simon Taylor was unbelievable with his ability to keep on running and win the ball.

He was supported by Dylan Burkitt, Jake Hartikainen and Brandon Sparke. The speed and intensity of Julian Nix and Shannon Shipman was exciting to watch and they played a vital role in helping control the centre of the ground.

Showing great spirit in the third quarter the Swans hit back as expected and their tall players were able to send the ball quickly into the Saints backline.

However, captain Ethan Kelly remained steadfast and by playing in front was able to lead the Saint defenders in Jimmy Naylor, Patrick Gillingham, Zac Challinor, Dean Bailey and Logan Medway.

In the final quarter the Saints kicked four straight goals to once again assert their authority.

Overall a very impressive display of Australian Rules Football by the Saints and full credit to the Swans who never gave up trying.

Goal Kickers for the Saints: Jack Gillingham 5, Adrian Nix 2, Simon Taylor 2, Angus Burkitt 2, Dylan Burkitt 1, Kyle Smidt 1, Jake Hartikainen 1.

Swans goal scorers: Stuart Bullen 2, Mitch Turner 1, Sam Turner 1, Ashley Sheehan-Munro 1 and Bryn Jenke 1.

Swans awards: Ashley Sheehan-Munro, Sam Turner, Stuart Bullen.

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